The Philippine Agricultural Journalists, Inc. (PAJ) and the country’s biggest agribusiness conglomerate, San Miguel Corporation (SMC), recently recognized this year’s winners of the 2014 PAJ-SMC Binhi Awards agricultural journalism contest, in simple ceremonies, held December 2, 2014, at Diamond Hotel, Manila.
They are James Konstantin Galvez and Conrad Cariño of The Manila Times, who won in five categories, and Czeriza Valencia and Marianne Go of The Philippine Star who copped three categories. They are among a more than dozen awardees, who received their respective prizes and trophies from PAJ president Roman Floresca and Francisco Alejo III, president of San Miguel PureFoods, who keynoted the affair, along with former Philippine Agriculture Secretary Senen Bacani, President of La Frutera , Inc., who chaired the five-man 2014 PAJ-SMC Binhi Awards board of judges. Bacani also spoke during affair, as well as another former Agriculture Secretary William Dar, director general of the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT), based in India.
The PAJ has been conducting the Binhi Awards since 1978, in partnership with various sponsors, which this year is led by SMC, to recognize the continuing efforts of print and broadcast journalists for their reportage on the major developments and issues in the Philippine agriculture, fisheries, environment, food and agribusiness sectors.
“We congratulate this year’s Binhi Awardees as we continue to pay tribute to our colleagues covering the agriculture, environment and agrarian reform beats, including dozens of writers, editors and broadcast journalists for their respective reportage, agricultural publications, radio and television programs, and information campaign,” said Floresca, who is also business editor of The Philippine Star.
“We are privileged to have SMC as our title sponsor this year, and we sincerely thank Mr. Ramon S. Ang, ably represented by Mr. Butch Alejo, for their support and generosity, as we were able to expand the contest and offer bigger prizes this year,” added Floresca.
This year’s Binhi Awards committee is chaired by Noel Reyes, PAJ vice president for internal affairs, who said more than 100 contestants vied for 14 categories, where the winners received cash prizes ranging from P20,000 to P50,000. They were composed of reporters and correspondents covering the Department of Agriculture (DA) and Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) beats, and writers and editors of major national publications in Metro Manila, Central and Southern Luzon, Visayas, Mindanao, and government agencies like the DA, Philippine Rice Research Institute, Bureau of Agricultural Research, and Philippine Carabao Center.
The 2014 PAJ-SMC Binhi Awardees are:
Agricultural Journalist of the Year: 1st – Fermin Diaz, Livestock and Meat Business (LaMB) magazine; 2nd – Abe Belena, Agrikultura, etc. magazine; 3rd – James Konstantin Galvez, The Manila Times;
Agri Beat Reporter of the Year: 1st – Czeriza Valencia, The Philippine Star; 2nd – James Konstantin Galvez, The Manila Time; 3rd – Ronnel Domingo, Philippine Daily Inquirer and Anna Leah Estrada, Manila Standard TODAY;
Environment Journalist of the Year: 1st – James Konstantin Galvez, The Manila Times; 2nd – Czeriza Valencia, The Philippine Star;
Best Agriculture News Story of the Year: ‘Government still eyeing rice self-sufficiency’ by James Konstantin Galvez, The Manila Times;
Best Agriculture Feature Story of the Year: ‘Formidable challenges on road to rice self-Sufficiency’ by Conrad Cariño, The Manila Times;
Best Environment Story of the Year: ‘Marilao land tillers fear agricultural demise amid dam repair delays’ by Leo Ortega Laparan II, Manila Bulletin;
Agri Broadcast Journalist of the Year: Dr. Custer C. Deocaris, anchor of ‘Pinoy Scientist’ Radio Program, DZEC;
Agri Photo Journalist of the Year: Rita Dela Cruz, DA-Bureau of Agricultural Research
Agricultural Magazine of the Year: Kaunlaran Magazine, published by Pangkat Kaunlaran;
Agricultural Newsletter of the Year: BAR Chronicle, DA-Bureau of Agricultural Research;
Best Agriculture/Environment Section of a National Newspaper: The Philippine Star, edited by Marianne Go;
Best Agricultural Radio Program: ‘Bagong Sigla sa Agrikultura,’ DA-Philippine Rice Research Institute;
Best Agricultural Television Program: ‘Agrikultura, etc.’ of Best Media Source Corporation; and
Best Agricultural Information & Media Campaign: ‘National Year of Rice 2013’ of Department of Agriculture- Philippine Rice Research Institute.
The other board of judges are: Mary Jane Oconer Llanes, AVP- SMC Media Affairs Group; Leo A. Deocadiz, editor-publisher of ‘The Sun Hong Kong’; Gene Hettel, senior science editor and historian, International Rice Research Institute (IRRI); and Gani Oro, anchorman of ‘Serbisyo All Access,’ 9 NEWS TV (Solar TV).
The 2014 PAJ-SMC Binhi Awards is also sponsored by Bayer Philippines, SL Agritech Corp., Philip Morris Fortune Tobacco Corp., and Phil Ass’n. of Flour Millers, Inc.
PAJ Press Release